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State cases top more than 2,000 deaths: University adds 17 cases

Even though Troy University has reported more than 130 cases of COVID-19 since students returned, the “vast majority” of those are asymptomatic.

Herb Reeves, dean of students for the university, said this week that “the vast majority, 90 percent or more, don’t have any symptoms. And we’ve not had anybody hospitalized with the virus.”

Reeves said the university’s COVID-19 taskforce has been working since March to implement safety precautions and guidelines for students and the university.

This week, the university suspended activities for all fraternities until after Labor Day because of cluster outbreaks at two fraternity houses, Delta Chi and Sigma Chi. Both of those houses are being cleaned and sanitized, per university guidelines.

Reeves said the university has been tracking self-reported cases since this summer, and rates are about 6 percent since students began to return to campus on Aug. 8. “Considering the number of students we have, I don’t think that’s a bad percentage,” he said.

Many of the students who reported a positive test have been isolating at home or off campus, and they will be allowed to return to classes after a 14-day quarantine period.

“We are strongly trying to encourage and educate (students) about the precautions,” he said.

The university reported an additional 17 cases on Friday, including 14 among off-campus students; two at Newman Hall; and one at Trojan Village.

In Pike County, five new cases bring the county’s total to 814 since tracking began, with seven deaths. According to the Alabama Department of Public Health risk assessment dashboard, Pike County remains in the moderate risk category this week.

Statewide, an additional 929 cases were reported overnight Thursday, bringing Alabama’s total to 113,723 with 2,017 confirmed deaths.